Curious topic

The possibility of human cloning, raised when Scottish scientists at Roslin Institute created the much-celebrated sheep “Dolly”, aroused worldwide interest and concern because of its scientific and ethical implications. The feat generated also uncertainty over the meaning of “cloning” – an umbrella term traditionally used by scientists to describe different processes for duplicating biological material.

The success rate of cloning has been low
Dolly the sheep was born after 277 eggs were to create
29 embryos, which only produced three lambs at birth, only one of which lived, Dolly. 70 calves have been created from 9,000 attempts and one third of them died young.
When Dolly died her stuffed remains were placed at Edinburgh’s Royal Museum, part of the National Museums of Scotland on 2003-04-09.

What is cloning?
Are there different types of cloning?
When the media report on cloning in the news, they are usually talking about only one type called reproductive – the creation of a genetically identical copy. There are different types of cloning however, and cloning technologies can be used for other purposes besides producing the genetic twin of another organism. These are: recombinant DNA technology or DNA cloning, reproductive cloning, and therapeutic cloning.
Human cloning is the creation of a genetically identical copy of an existing, or previously existing human or growing cloned tissue from that individual. The term is generally used to refer to artificial human cloning; human clones in the form of identical twins are commonplace, with their cloning occurring during the natural process of reproduction.

What are Genetically Modified (GM) Foods?
Although “biotechnology” and “genetic modification” commonly are used interchangeably, GM is a special set of technologies that alter the genetic makeup of such living organisms as animals, plants, or bacteria. Biotechnology, a more general term, refers to using living organisms or their components, such as enzymes, to make products that include wine, cheese, beer, and yogurt.
Combining genes from different organisms is known as recombinant DNA technology, and the resulting organism is said to be “genetically modified,” “genetically engineered,” or “transgenic”. GM products (current or in the pipeline) include medicines and vaccines, foods and food ingredients, feeds, and fibers.

Improve your vocabulary!

genetically modified (GM) foods – żywnośćzmodyfikowana genetycznie
alter – zmieniać, modyfikować
current – bieżący, aktualny,rozpowszechniony
in the pipeline – w trakcieczegoś (załatwiania, produkcji)
vaccines – szczepionki
fiber – błonnik
cloning – klonowanie
raised – powstała
arouse – wzbudzać
implication – następstwo, konsekwencja
feat – wyczyn
uncertainty – niewiadome
embryo – zarodek, embrion
attempt – próba, zamiar
stuffed – wypchany
genetically – genetycznie
tissue – tkanka
artificial – sztuczny
commonplace – zwykły
interchangeably – zamiennie
biotechnology – biotechnologia
genetic modification – modyfikacja genetyczna
fertilize – zapładniać;
denominations – wyznania
objection – sprzeciw
damaged – uszkodzony
due to – z powodu
inherent – wrodzony
unreliability – nierzetelność
primates – naczelne
issue – sprawa, kwestia, problem
benefits – korzyści
controversies – kontrowersje
enhanced – uwydatniony
maturation – dojrzewanie
resistance – odporność
efficiency – wydajność
impact – wpływ
loss – utrata
dependence – zależność
violation – naruszenie
tampering with – manipulować przy czymś
labeling – etykietowanie
mandatory – ­nakazany prawem, obowiązkowy
confound – zadziwiać, zawstydzać
skewed – wypaczony
needless to say – nie trzeba wspominać
poignant – przejmujący
reflect – odzwierciedlać


GM Products: Benefits and Controversies


Enhanced taste and quality
Reduced maturation time
Improved resistance to disease, pests, and herbicides
New products and growing techniques

Increased resistance, productivity and feed efficiency
Better yields of meat, eggs, and milk
Improved animal health and diagnostic methods

“Friendly” bioherbicides and bioinsecticides
Conservation of soil, water, and energy
Bioprocessing for forestry products
Better natural waste management
More efficient processing

Increased food security for growing populations


Potential human health impact: allergens, transfer of antibiotic resistance markers, unknown effects Potential environmental impact: loss of flora and fauna biodiversity

Access and Intellectual Property
Domination of world food production by a few companies
Increasing dependence on industralized nations by developing countries
Biopiracy – foreign exploitation of natural resources

Violation of natural organisms’ intrinsic values
Tampering with nature by mixing genes among species
Objections to consuming animal genes in plants and vice versa
Stress for animal

Not mandatory in some countries (United States)
Mixing GM crops with non-GM confounds labeling attempts

New advances may be skewed to interests of rich countries

Needless to say, cloning is a poignant and important topic, reflected by its frequent discussion and debate among politicians, scientists, the media, religions, and the general public.

Christian views on cloning
Roman Catholicism and many conservative Christian groups have op­posed human cloning and the cloning of human embryos, believing that a human life begins the moment a human egg becomes fertilized. Other Christian denominations such as the United Church of Christ do not believe a fertilized egg constitutes a living being, but still they oppose the cloning of embryonic cells.
At present, the main objection to human cloning is that the cloned individual may be biologically ­damaged, due to the inherent unreliability of its origin: researchers currently are unable to safely and reliably clone non-human ­primates. However, as cloning research and methods improve, concerns of safety and reliability will no longer be an issue. However, it must be ­pointed out that this has yet to occur, and may never occur.